THE LIBRARY OF THE
AT CHAPEL HILL
THE COLLECTION OF
North Carol iniana Society
FOR USE ONLY IN
THE NORTH CAROLINA COLLECTION
Digitized by the Internet Archive
in 2012 with funding from
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
William Clyde Friday
Ida Howell Friday
Georgia Carroll Kyser
William Brantley Aycock
NORTH CAROLINIANA SOCIETY IMPRINTS
This edition is limited to
five hundred copies
of which this is number
NORTH CAROLINIANA SOCIETY IMPRINTS
H. G.Jones, Editor
No. 1. An Evening at Monticello: An Essay in Reflection (1978)
by Edwin M. Gill
No. 2. The Paul Green I Know (1978)
by Elizabeth Lay Green
No. 3. The Albert Coates I Know (1979)
by Gladys Hall Coates
No. 4. The Sam Ervin I Know (1980)
by Jean Conyers Ervin
No. 5. 5am Ragan (1981)
by Neil Morgan
No. 6. Thomas Wolfe of North Carolina (1982)
edited by H. G. Jones
No. 7. Gertrude Sprague Carraway (1982)
by Sam Ragan
No. 8. John Fries Blair (1983)
by Margaret Blair McCuiston
No. 9. William Clyde Friday and Ida Howell Friday (1984)
by Georgia Carroll Kyser and William Brantley Aycock
,' A ?.
William Clyde Friday
Ida Howell Friday
Georgia Carroll Kyser
William Brantley Afcock
Together with Proceedings of a Banquet on the Occasion of the Presentation
of the North Caroliniana Society Award for 1984
NORTH CAROLINIANA SOCIETY, INC.
Copyright © 1984 by
North Caroliniana Society, Inc.
P.O. Box 127
Chapel Hill, North Carolina 21514-0127
All rights reserved
Manufactured in the United States of America
FRIDAY EVENING WITH THE FRIDAYS
On the evening of May 4, 1984, friends attended a reception and banquet in
the Carolina Inn, Chapel Hill, honoring William and Ida Friday on the occasion
of their acceptance of the North Caroliniana Society Award for 1984. The
master of ceremonies was Dr. H. G.Jones, curator of the North Carolina Collec-
tion and secretary- treasurer of the North Caroliniana Society, and the award was
presented by Archie K. Davis, president of the Society. Georgia Carroll Kyser
and William B. Aycock represented the audience with tributes to the Fridays.
Their remarks, along with the responses of the recipients, are published in this the
ninth number of the North Caroliniana Society Imprints series.
THE NORTH CAROLINIANA SOCIETY
WILLIAM AND IDA FRIDAY
Friday, May 4, 1 984
Master of Ceremonies
Dr. H.G. Jones, Secretary oj the Society
Introduction of Head Table
Ida Howell Friday
Georgia Carroll Kyser
William Clyde Fridav
William B. Aycock
Presentation of the North Caroliniana Society Award
Archie K. Davis, President of the Society
Ida and William Friday
The North Caroliniana Society,
in reccgnition oi their public service and
of their contributions to the cultural life
of their fellow North Carolinians.
North Caroliniana Society Award
WILLIAM AND IDA FRIDAY
May 4. 1984
Archie K. Davis
6c c rela r v-Treasu rer
Archie K. Davis, president of the Society, confers the North Caroliniana
Society Award for 1984 on William and Ida Friday (top). Mrs. Friday ac-
knowledges the award in the lower photograph. In both pictures, Geor-
gia Carroll Kyser, one of the speakers, is at left. (All photos by Jerry W.
William B. Aycock (at right in the top picture) served as chancellor of
UNC-CH under President Friday. Here he is with his sister, Katherine
Aycock Boyette, and Messrs. Davis and Friday. At bottom, Asa T.
Spaulding, Sr. , of Durham (foreground) is welcomed to the reception
preceding the dinner.
In the top photo, the Fridays greet Dr. and Mrs. Charles F. Carroll of
Raleigh, and at bottom is Judge Willis P. Whichard of the North Caro-
lina Court of Appeals. Friday and Carroll worked closely together when
the latter was state superintendent of public instruction.
ft ■' ^
1 \\S )
■ v .
1 y? ~
Congressman Ike Andrews, whose district includes Orange County,
congratulates the Fridays in the upper photograph. In the lower picture
are Charles Aycock Poe and his wife, Betty. Poe, a Raleigh attorney, is
the son of the late Clarence Poe, longtime editor and state cultural and
The Fridays chat with Sam and Marjorie Ragan of Southern Pines at top.
Ragan, author, editor, and first secretary of the Department of Cultural
Resources, was recipient of the North Caroliniana Society Award in
1981. At bottom is Dr. James F. Govan, university librarian at UNC.
At top, D. Clifton Brock, Jr., and his wife, Eunice, greet the Fridays.
Brock is associate university librarian for special collections. In lower
photograph is William T. Couch, former director of the presses at the
University of North Carolina and University of Chicago.
Louis M. Connor, Jr., and Gertrude S. Carraway, both members of the
Society's board of directors, pose with the Fridays in the upper photo.
Dr. Carraway was recipient of the award in 1982. In the lower photo are
Mr. and Mrs. Frank H. Kenan of Durham, faithful supporters of the
At top left are the Fridays with Henry A. Foscue, former chairman of
the board of trustees; and at top right, Georgia Carroll Kyser poses with
her husband, bandleader Kay Kyser. William B. Aycock and Charlie
(Choo-Choo) Justice banter in lower photo with Betty Hodges of the
Durham Morning Herald.
H. G. JONES, Master of Ceremonies:
Friends of Ida and William Friday — and you are here because you
are a friend:
Welcome to a somewhat altered format of "North Carolina People"
in which William Friday, instead of interviewing another North Caro-
linian, will, with his partner, Ida, figuratively face the camera and serve
as the subjects of the probing investigation of two of their longtime
associates and the friendly eyes of you, their longtime admirers.
This is the first time that the North Caroliniana Society Award for
contributions to the cultural life of our state has been given jointly, but
our board of directors, like you, could not think of one of the Fridays
without the other. Individually each deserves our recognition; together,
they constitute a rare state cultural resource, and they honor us by allow-
ing us to spend this evening with them.
Those who have attended previous award dinners will observe at
least two changes this year. For the first time we have not conspired with
our speakers to harass our recipients, not because they and we would not
enjoy a real Friday roast, including a slam dunk by the captain of the
girls' basketball team of Lumberton High School, but because of our
profound desire to show them our respect and admiration for their ser-
vices to North Carolina. Second, this is the shortest head table we've
ever had, mainly because so many who ought to be up here on the stage
wanted to see the Fridays face-on rather than sideways. Because you al-
ready know them and will later hear from most of them, I now simply
name those on display and ask them to stand and remain standing until
all have been introduced — and will you withhold your applause:
From my right: Katherine Aycock Boyette, Archie K. Davis, Geor-
gia Carroll Kyser; and from my left: Kay Kyser and William B. Aycock.
And now would you join in welcoming our recipients, Ida and Bill Fri-
In the audience is one of the Fridays' three daughters, Frances, and
her husband, Jack Mullen.
And because you are all distinguished guests, I will limit further in-
troductions to three of the previous six recipients of the North Carolini-
ana Society Award: 1979, Albert Coates; 1981, Sam Ragan; and 1982,
Gertrude Carraway. Paul Green, our initial recipient, is now with us only
in influence and memory; Senator Sam Ervin, our 1980 recipient, sent
his very best wishes to "two of my favorite people;" and John Fries
Blair, last year's recipient, is recovering from eye surgery and sends his
congratulations and warm regards.
Will you now visit with your table companions and enjoy your
dinner. We will be back for dessert.
We usually select for our North Caroliniana Society Award dinner
a date that has particular meaning for the recipients. For Paul Green, for
instance, it was his 84th birthday. Insofar as we know, May 4 has no spe-
cial significance for Bill and Ida Friday, but May 13, the date we wanted
to pick, comes a week from Sunday, the University's commencement
day. You see, forty-two years ago on May 13, Ida Willa Howell became
the bride of William Clyde Friday. Nine days in advance, let's wish them
a happy anniversary.
So, we chose the second busiest weekend of the year, one that com-
petes with functions at the constituent institutions of the University sys-
tem, with the trip of many Tar Heels to England in commemoration of
the quadricentennial of the Roanoke voyages, and with last-minute po-
litical campaigning. Many of your friends, Bill and Ida, have sent their
regrets, including Governor Terry Sanford, whose Duke trustees are
meeting tonight; Governor Hunt, who is — well, just guess; and Gov-
ernor Moore, who preferred not to share Jeanelle with a large crowd on
this particular night, their fifty-first wedding anniversary. George Watts
Hill, Sam Ervin, Eunice Ervin, George London, Isaac Copeland, Jane
Bahnsen, and Billy Arthur sent with their regrets contributions in your
honor. In that connection, bide your time, for in a few months you will
receive a little publication in the North Caroliniana Society Imprints series
containing the entire proceedings of this evening, and at that time you
will be given a suggestion of how you may further express your good-
will for the Fridays.
In this ballroom are more than 250 North Carolinians whose lives
have been touched by you, Bill and Ida Friday. Each has been a benefi-
ciary of your services to the state, and each knows you in a different way.
I recall, for instance, one of my early dealings with Ida. She and her
friend Georgia Kyser came to see me when I was director of the State
Department of Archives and History in hopes of obtaining an allocation
of public funds with which to save the Horace Williams House. When I
explained commitments to other statewide priorities, they left disap-
pointed but with a pledge to accomplish their goal anyway. Now, each
time we drive down Franklin Street, a quick glance — and on that curve
only a quick glance is safe — reminds us that the efforts of these two
women launched the movement that provides Chapel Hill with a unique
Bill Friday is for me a clock, for at seven o'clock in the morning I
meet him as he goes to his office. More importantly, in the age of facade,
he is a man who looks past fancy covers and faddish jargon to the sub-
stance of the stream of reports that inundate his office. He recognizes
mediocrity for what it is: a status with neither satisfaction nor pride.
Any of you tonight could talk about the Bill and Ida Friday that
you know. We have chosen to speak for you two persons who have spe-
cial reason to know them well. In the spirit of this occasion, they are
friends of the Fridays.
One of Ida Friday's closest neighbors is also a close friend who
shares her interest in art, history, and culture. Together they have sparked
a reawakening of the community's pride in its cultural resources. Their
imprint may be seen all around this town, and nowhere more visibly
than here in the Carolina Inn, which John Sprunt Hill gave to the Uni-
versity to help support the North Carolina Collection. It was Ida Friday
and Georgia Kyser who recently redecorated the Inn. In the public
rooms and the sleeping rooms, you see their taste and talents.
Above a pool in the Texas state fairgrounds is a statue by sculptor
Pierre Bourdelle. Since posing for that statue when she was a youngster,
a tall Texan has passed through three careers that put her in the national
limelight. As a model, she graced the covers of national magazines.
Work as a movie actress led to her association with a great American in-
stitution figuratively attended by millions — the Kollege of Musical
Knowledge, whose mortarboarded professor made her the lead singer in
his immensely popular orchestra. He also made her the woman of his life,
and when they gave up their radio and television contracts, he brought
her to his native state and to this university town, where they have
reared a family and enriched the life of the community. Tonight she has
something to say about Ida Friday, and I am glad to present her as Pro-
fessor Kay Kyser presented her four decades ago — "Miss Gorgeous
IDA HOWELL FRIDAY
By Georgia Carroll Kyser
Ida Friday has been my good friend for thirty-two years. In fact, she
was the first friend I made when Kay and I moved to Chapel Hill in
We had moved here because Kay had always wanted to live here.
He had gone to school here, started his orchestra here, and he had inher-
ited a family house here. Most important, we both liked the small town
atmosphere, good values, and intellectual opportunities that we could
find here for our daughters, as well as for ourselves.
I had not had a college education when I was younger, and I looked
forward to taking classes in the University once I got settled. My special
interest was art, so my first course was Robert Howard's Beginning
Sculpture. In this class I became friends with a young woman, just my
age: Ida Friday. Because we were both slightly older than the other stu-
dents and both married, we had much in common. We also shared an in-
terest in learning more about art and loved discussing it. I soon learned
that academically Ida was way ahead of me. She had not only graduated
from Meredith College as a home economics major; she had a master's
degree from Carolina in public health.
Her husband, Bill, had graduated from State, majoring in textile en-
gineering, and also had a law degree from UNC. At the time, Bill was
working as assistant to the president of the University, Gordon Gray. At
Christmas, Kay and I were invited to the Fridays' very modest apartment
to make fruitcake, using Ida's family recipe (a tradition that continues in
both our families). She and Bill apologized for their shabby furnishings,
explaining that they were saving up to buy new furniture when they
built their new house. They showed me their plans, and I think I made a
few suggestions. Now, thirty-two years later, I'm doing the same thing
as they build their retirement house.
During this early period, Ida and I took several art classes together
and became even better friends. In the meantime, the Fridays moved into
their new contemporary home. We shared their joy when their first
child, Frances, arrived, and a few years after when Mary and Betsy came
along. Since we both now had three-daughter families, there was much
exchanging of outgrown children's clothes back and forth between the
Kysers and the Fridays. The families, too, spent hours together swim-
ming in our pool in the summer.
By now, Bill had become president of the University, at 36, the
youngest in the country. That was the good news. The bad news was
that this meant Bill and Ida had to move out of their new house into the
"President's Mansion." The good news was that that house is only two
doors from ours. At the time, the furniture in the president's house con-
sisted of eight dining room chairs and one grandfather's clock. That's
all. The task of furnishing so large a house was so great that Billy Car-
michael arranged for Ida to have the services of interior designer Otto
Zenke. When she made her selections, Ida asked me to come along, for
moral support as much as anything. I loved doing this because I had al-
ways had a great interest in the decorative arts. Ida's choices were evi-
dently good because basically the house is the same today, twenty-eight
years later. It has not only held up well; it is better, thanks to Ida. She
just never stops learning and improving. All through the years she has
observed, becoming knowledgeable about antiques, and upgrading —
constantly replacing reproductions with valuable antiques. This was
done through encouraging and soliciting generous donations from alum-
ni. When the Fridays eventually retire, they will leave behind a very val-
uable collection for the benefit of the University and the state and the
use of the next president and his family.
This is just one small example of how Ida has grown and continues
to grow in the job of both wife of the president and as a remarkable per-
son in her own right. She grows because of her amazing openness of
thought and her humility. She is never afraid to admit that she doesn't
know something. She stays flexible. If a better way can be found to do
something, she'll change. She grows, too, because she is the most dili-
gent, self-effacing, hardworking person I know, with the possible excep-
tion of her husband, Bill Friday.
For the first few years, the challenges of running a big house and
raising three children gave Ida little time for activities outside her role as
president's wife, but she was taking advantage of every opportunity to
observe and learn in her new role. She traveled around the country to
other universities and even went to the White House on several occa-
sions. Also she began traveling in other countries. Her first trip outside
our country was to Mexico with our family. Bill was too busy to go.
Our later trips included Europe, North Africa, Greece, Turkey, and the
Orient. Bill encouraged Ida to go each time because he could see how
much she was being enriched by each foreign experience. Ida's eagerness
to see and learn was such fun to share, and she wanted to know and see
everything — and she didn't miss much. Also, our art training came in
handy during these times.
Back home, Ida gradually started working on different boards that
caught her interest — the Council for the Aging and the League of
Women Voters, for example. Thanks to Ida, I became more aware of
my own responsibility as a citizen to learn as much as possible about can-
didates — and to vote! She and Bill also encouraged me to work for a
degree from the University. I was afraid I couldn't do it — didn't know
enough, wasn't smart enough — but with their encouragement, and
after a mere nineteen years, I did receive my degree. I wasn't that slow a
student, but family responsibilities and time out to have another child de-
layed my studies.
A year or so later, Ida and I labored as cochairmen for the first sym-
phony ball held at the Governor's Mansion. She did most of the work,
and I was impressed by her attention to detail. It was largely due to her
efforts that we were able to raise so much money for the North Carolina
Our next joint effort was starting the Preservation Society, which
we agonized over for four years. We both were dedicated to the idea that
Chapel Hill must not be ruined by the rapid growth that was taking
place — that we must encourage citizens and developers to save struc-
tures worth saving and to preserve our rock walls and the trees, and to
maintain the small scale in what is now the Historic District. Here again
Ida did most of the work and cheerfully took on the responsibility of
serving as the president. Since then she has headed the Stagville Preserva-
tion Board, North Carolina Central University Art Museum Board,
Roanoke Island Historical Association, and the Bicentennial Commis-
sion for Chapel Hill, and she served on the Appearance Commission. She
was primarily responsible for the success of the Cartier Soiree that raised
thousands of dollars for the North Carolina Art Museum. Each year Ida
has worked tirelessly to get support for the American Dance Festival.
For the past year, she has been working on housing for the aged and the
women's center, which is her favorite project of the moment. And this
is not all that she has done — just some of the highlights.
I love it when Ida calls on the phone and Louise Parrish, my help,
answers. She calls me by saying, "Your sister is on the phone." Just
how has "sister" Ida been able to accomplish so much? I've never
known anyone whose motivations are more pure than Ida's. She has no
ego problems — never expects or looks for applause or praise — but once
she is committed to a project, she gets very involved and simply works
harder than most people. And she has great courage, courage to take on
the responsibility of difficult tasks. Her satisfaction comes simply from
seeing a job well done and making things better for us all.
Thank you, Ida, for your contributions to the cultural enrichment
of our state, and thank you, Bill, for supporting her and giving her the
freedom to grow and be a person in her own right.
Perhaps it is not surprising that a fellow born in Lucama, brought
up in Selma, schooled at North Carolina State College, trained by the
National Youth Administration, and tested under fire as a public school
teacher and as a World War II battalion commander, should have ac-
quired the qualities that prepared him for a distinguished career. Some-
how, though, we suspect it was his graduate work in history and law
here at Chapel Hill that helped shape the man who has been recognized
by decorations for valor on the battlefield, commendations for effective
support of Dr. Frank Porter Graham in India and Pakistan, and repeated
awards for excellence in the classroom. In 1948 he joined the faculty of
the UNC Law School, and only nine years later he was elected chancellor
of the University. His tenure coincided with the beginning of a stressful
era on college campuses, but despite such challenges as increased student
militancy and passage of the Speaker-Ban act, he maintained the steady
course of the University, and in 1964 he returned to his prime commit-
ment, teaching. Thus for seven years as chancellor he worked intimately
with President Friday, and he has remained a warm friend. We are
delighted to hear Professor William B. Aycock tell us about the William
Friday that he knows.
WILLIAM CLYDE FRIDAY
By William Brantley Aycock
For more than a quarter of a century public higher education in
North Carolina and Bill Friday have grown together to fashion a seam-
The genesis of public higher education in this state is found in the
Constitution of North Carolina adopted in 1776. Article 41 provides:
"... [A]ll useful learning shall be duly encouraged and promoted in one
or more universities." Mrs. Gladys Tillett of Charlotte, a member of the
Board of Trustees of the three-campus University, attributed the author-
ship of this constitutional provision to Waightstill Avery, who was then
living in Charlotte. Due largely to Mrs. Tillett's efforts, in 1958 a new
building located on the Chapel Hill campus was named in Avery's
honor. The following fall new faculty members in an orientation session
were informed of the Waightstill Avery story. A newcomer to the fac-
ulty inquired if the delay of 182 years did not appear to be a bit long.
True, but the newcomer was informed that, even so, the naming of the
building provides concrete proof that when one does something signifi-
cant for education in North Carolina sooner or later recognition will be
Until recently a cautious nature prevailing in North Carolina dic-
tated that a public servant should not be acknowledged fully until death,
or at least until retirement. Happily, President Archie Davis, Dr. H. G.
Jones, and the North Caroliniana Society have made it possible for us to
come together to honor two among us who are still serving us well.
Here they are — Ida and Bill: gifted, hardworking, vibrant, radiant, and
in full flower.
My assignment is to talk about the Bill Friday I know. Bill has only
two categories of friends — old friends and new friends. Beyond that
there are no categories. All friends to him are special. Thus I will be talk-
ing about the Bill Friday we know. To talk a bit about both Bill and Ida
involves more than honoring two great friends and two friendly greats.
It brings a tinge of excitement and an inner satisfaction that comes when
we pause, as we do this evening, to "smell the roses on the way."
Bill and I first met as beginning law students at Chapel Hill. I soon
learned something about his past. He came to Chapel Hill after serving
as a lieutenant in the Navy in World War II. His parents were David La-
tham and Mary Elizabeth Rowan Friday. Born in Raphine, Virginia, he
and his sister, Betty, and three brothers, Rudd, Dave, and John, grew up
in Dallas, North Carolina. After attending Wake Forest College for a
year, he transferred to North Carolina State College where, in 1941, he
earned a degree in textile engineering. At State he was president of the
senior class and a member of the two campuswide leadership societies —
Blue Key and Golden Chain.
As an undergraduate at State he got a taste of administration while
working in the office of the dean of students. In addition, he did part-
time work with the sports publicity department. One of his duties on
the sports side was to serve as "spotter" for the legendary Ray Reeves,
who broadcast the N. C. State football games. Orville Campbell, now
editor and publisher of the Chapel Hill Newspaper, was the "spotter" for
Carolina. This is where Bill and Orville first met. Since then, they have
met many times, usually to do good things for this community. Most re-
cently, they met to launch the campaign to "Save the Y." Any "spot-
ter" will identify Bill and Orville immediately as two of the most highlv
esteemed citizens in this university community.
In law school, Bill Friday and I were in the same study group. In
this group was William A. Dees, Jr., who became the first chairman of
the Board of Governors of the sixteen institutions now comprising the
University of North Carolina. Last month William Dees received the
Distinguished Service Award, the nation's highest honor for trustees, at
a meeting of the National Conference on Trusteeship in San Francisco.
John R. Jordan, Jr., the current chairman of the Board of Governors,
also was a member of our study group. Another member was J. Dickson
Phillips, Jr., a former professor of law and dean of the UNC Law School,
and now a distinguished judge of the United States Court of Appeals.
William A. Johnson, the second chairman of the Board of Governors,
was not a member of the group inasmuch as he graduated from law
school before we arrived.
The Fridays and the Aycocks were neighbors during law school
days. Daniels Road was a short street on the back side of the original
Victory Village. There we were fortunate to live in prefabricated houses
secured by the University from the armed services after World War II.
In Victory Village we first met Pansy Howell, the mother of Ida, a pub-
lic school teacher for many years who was in Chapel Hill for graduate
study. Also living on our street were friends who later worked for the
University and who are still with us. Ginny Wells was secretary to Bill
Friday, and she is now with the University at Chapel Hill. Among our
other neighbors were Joe and Ginny Hilton, Emil and Eliska Chanlett,
Gordon and Martha Cleveland, and Martha McKee, whose late husband,
Bob, was professor of chemistry.
It was not surprising that Bill Friday became a friend of everyone in
law school. He was elected president of the Student Bar Association. He
brought vigor and vision to the post and established a foundation for ser-
vice to the law school that impressed not only his fellow students, but
also Dean Wettach and a faculty comprised of outstanding teachers and
scholars: Coates, Breckenridge, Van Hecke, McCall, Hanft, Dalzell,
Brandis and Baer. In 1948, Bill was awarded the degree in law and
promptly passed the North Carolina bar examination.
Upon graduation from law school, he chose not to practice law.
Fred Weaver, dean of students at Chapel Hill, was able to induce him to
become his assistant. In 1948, Bill went to South Building to work in
the office of Fred Weaver, and in the local administration of Chancellor
In 1950, while Bill was working in the office of the dean of stu-
dents, my family had to leave Victory Village because the limited time
for occupancy would soon expire. Housing was very scarce in Chapel
Hill and we decided to build. This was possible only if we did much of
the work. Bill Friday was interested in our home building project. On
one occasion I recall he came by after hours and found us painting. He
shed his coat and took a long and productive turn with the paintbrush.
A year or so later the Fridays decided to build. Inasmuch as I had done
some cement work at our house I offered to help with their cement
work. Ida, always in search for a touch of beauty, secured some colorful
pebbles to insert in the cement. To properly insert pebbles in cement was
beyond my experience. Some pebbles sank out of sight and others pro-
truded too much. Ida, in keeping with her gracious nature, was merci-
fully silent about the quality of my assistance on this project. Years later,
when Thomas Kenan and his mother, Harriet DuBose Gray, donated a
magnificent Waterford chandelier to the University President's House, it
arrived disassembled and without instructions. When Ida turned to
Georgia Kyser and not me for help on this delicate project, I understood
Bill has always loved children and they him. My wife, Grace, and I
were concerned that our children, Bill and Nancy, prematurely we
thought, became cynical about Santa Claus. When Bill Friday heard
about it, he utilized his finest Santa Claus telephone voice to revive their
hopes and dreams. Ida and Bill are loving and dutiful parents. Frances is a
professional nurse and she and her husband, Jack Mullen, are the parents
of Miranda, the first grandchild. Mary is an attorney, and Betsy is a pro-
fessional dancer. To know these children, as I do, leads me to the happy
conclusion that Ida and Bill have the family that they richly deserve.
In 1948, as assistant dean of students, Bill started at the entry level
of university administration. His ascent was spectacular. When Gordon
Gray succeeded Dr. Frank Graham as president, he selected Bill as his as-
sistant and Bill thus became the first secretary of the University system.
In a few years Bill was appointed acting president to serve while the
Board of Trustees searched for a new president. The search was nation-
wide and over 140 candidates were appraised. In the meantime, Bill, as
acting president, was performing as a president is supposed to perform.
The trustees began to think that the person they were looking for was al-
ready in the job. As expected, reservations about Bill were expressed by
faculty groups who traditionally favor the selection of administrators
from their own ranks. This faculty concern stems from fear that the unique
role of the faculty may not be understood. A university cannot be
equated to a business organization or to the military establishment. The
faculty, as the work force, is composed solely of generals. The business of
the faculty is to hunt after truth. Dividends from this business simply
cannot be measured on a quarterly basis. Bill understood this from the
beginning. The trustees soon realized that he understood. The right man
was already on hand. Thus, at the age of thirty-six, only eight years after
graduation from law school, Bill became the president of the University.
Understandably, this amazing ascent up the ladder of educational admin-
istration received national attention.
At the time Bill became president, Gordon Gray characterized him
in this manner: "He is a man of deep moral conviction, unimpeachable
integrity. . .and capacity for growth." In this appraisal we concur. The
Bill Friday I know has utilized to the fullest his opportunities to grow in
wisdom and understanding. Often I think about an observation made by
Chancellor House to the effect that on a university campus there are
many values that are caught and not taught. Bill "caught" the best from
his associates. His natural rapport with students was enriched by work-
ing with Fred Weaver. To catch the spirit of Dr. Frank Graham was not
difficult for Bill because that spirit was consistent with his own instincts.
Vice-President Billy Carmichael was a master in working with the
General Assembly. Those of us who saw his calling card for legislators
will never forget the inscription: "How can we run a vast university on
a half vast budget?" Equally important were the efforts made by Billy
Carmichael to forge a partnership between the business community and
higher education. From these able and dedicated men — House, Gra-
ham, Weaver, Carmichael, and Gray — and from such stalwarts on the
Board of Trustees as George Watts Hill, Sr. , Henry Foscue, and the late
John Umstead, Bill was able to nourish his own values. From these asso-
ciations emerged Bill Friday, the educational leader, whose leadership is
laced with friendship but always with the right touch of dignity.
Legislation in 1931 provided that the University of North Carolina,
the North Carolina State College of Agriculture and Engineering, and
the North Carolina College for Women be consolidated and merged into
"The University of North Carolina." These three campuses comprised
the system presided over by Frank Graham, Gordon Gray, and Harris
Purks. But it was under Bill Friday that the system began to expand.
In the 1960s, Charlotte, Asheville, and Wilmington were brought
into the fold. Meanwhile, the General Assembly authorized the establish-
ment of a Board of Higher Education with responsibilities that over-
lapped those of the Consolidated University. Conflicts were inevitable.
In 1971, while Robert Scott was governor, this dilemma was resolved.
Sixteen institutions, including the School of the Arts, were brought un-
der the jurisdiction of a single Board of Governors. This board, without
a pause, selected Bill as president of the new and enlarged system.
To establish a workable organization for these sixteen institutions
called for administrative skill of the highest order. The personnel of the
former Board of Higher Education had to be merged with the staff of the
university system. The mutual respect that exists between Bill and his
staff in the General Administration is of such grand dimension that only
they can express it adequately. Today, in addition to his efficient staff of
coworkers, there are chancellors, deans, department heads, directors,
and finance officers on each of sixteen campuses. Bill is the linchpin that
connects this complex system of higher education that radiates
throughout the state. Consistently he has demonstrated administrative
skill of the highest order.
Often problems arise in university administration that test the mettle
of those in positions of responsibility. Let me touch on three problems to
demonstrate that the "mettle" in Bill is hard steel. Bill likes sports. In
his youth he played baseball and wrote sports for the Gastonia Gazette.
His current interests range from seeking reforms in the NCAA to help-
ing Lambda Chi Alpha in bouncing a basketball to raise funds to fight
cystic fibrosis. Occasionally, he gets in a round at Finley Golf Course,
and he is clearly a better player than many of us who try it more often.
In 1960, troubles emerged in the basketball programs in the university
system. Something needed to be done to return the sport to its proper
role. Bill took action. Schedules were reduced and recruiting was cur-
tailed. The popular Dixie Classic was terminated. Bill knew that a storm
of criticism would follow. He was absolutely correct. But the situation
has been better ever since.
In 1963, hard on the heels of the athletic difficulties, came the Speaker
Ban Law which placed a special limitation on the freedom of speech in
public higher education. John Sanders was the first person I know who
made a detailed legal analysis of this law. We recall the efforts of the press
of the state and of the alumni to remove this law from the books.
Among these alumni were twice-Pulitzer Prize winner Vermont Roy-
ster, William Snider, McNeill Smith, and R. Mayne Albright. In 1965
the General Assembly, on the recommendation of the Britt Commission
appointed by Governor Moore, deleted the mandatory prohibitive lan-
guage of the law but did not repeal it. Finally, in 1968 on the initiative of
Paul Dickson III and other student leaders at Chapel Hill, a lawsuit was
instituted which led to the amended law being declared unconstitu-
tional. Thus five years of controversy came to an end.
Overlooked in this story is that when Bill Friday started to marshall
forces in 1963 to secure repeal of the law soon after it was passed, he en-
countered a serious obstacle. Many members of the Board of Trustees did
not understand the serious effect this law would have on higher educa-
tion, and they were unwilling to venture into the political mine field
that surrounded it. Bill quietly arranged an educational campaign for the
trustees. It extended across the state. The power of education began to
manifest itself, and in due course most of the trustees joined in the cam-
paign to secure repeal.
I surmise the most difficult problem during the past twenty-eight
years for Bill involved the United States Department of Health, Educa-
tion and Welfare. The origins of the legal controversy occurred in 1970
when a suit was brought by the Legal Defense Fund against HEW seek-
ing to force that agency to achieve more desegregation in higher educa-
tion. In 1973, HEW called upon President Friday to submit a plan for
desegregation. In 1974, the requested plan was submitted by the Univer-
sity and approved by HEW. But three years later, in 1977, the court, in
the Legal Defense Fund case against HEW, disapproved UNC's 1974
plan. The heart of the controversy between HEW and the University in
the formulation of a new plan was not over goals but the means to achieve
those goals. HEW officials apparently did not appreciate the difference
between higher education and the military establishment. Somehow, they
assumed it was feasible to shift students and faculty from campus to cam-
pus in the same manner as military personnel are shifted from one unit to
another. To the extent that HEW sought to exercise control over higher
education in North Carolina, Bill and the Board of Governors stood
steadfast against it. In 1981, the University initiated a lawsuit against
HEW. The result was a consent decree in which the University made
commitments to increase minority presence in enrollments and employ-
ment and to further develop the predominately black institutions. At the
same time, the University retained control of the means to achieve these
Interwoven in Bill's leadership in the University system is a legion
of other accomplishments. To mention the National Humanities Center
in the Research Triangle Park immediately brings to mind Archie Davis
and Bill Friday and their work to bring this center to North Carolina.
Bill has recently served as chairman of the Commission on the Future of
North Carolina — the Year 2000 Project — in which a blueprint for the
future of the state is encompassed in a hundred or more recommenda-
tions concerning our people, economy, natural resources, and commu-
nity development. His television program on WUNC-TV — "North
Carolina People" — is widely viewed and applauded throughout the
On the national scene he has achieved recognition for his work in
such abundance that one must be selective. He was a member of the
Board of Trustees of Howard University, president of the Association of
American Universities, chairman of the American Council of Education,
chairman of the Commission on White House Fellows, chairman of
President Johnson's Task Force on Education in 1966 and, ten years la-
ter, chairman of President Carter's Task Force on Education. Among his
several activities on the national scene at present is his work on the com-
mission to study the state university system of New York.
Achievements have not gone unnoticed. Honorary degrees are
many. In 1980, Ida and Bill were invited to the University of North
Carolina at Charlotte. The event was the dedication of a new building
for the school of business administration. The name of the new structure
is the "Ida and Bill Friday Building." A year later, Ida and Bill were the
first couple to receive the North Carolina Public Service Award. At this
occasion, former governors Sanford, Moore, Scott, and Holshouser,
along with Governor Hunt, spoke. Were Governor Hodges living, he
would have been there to repeat what he once said: "All we know about
Bill Friday is good." So it was then, so it is now.
We cannot now know the direction tides of destiny will flow. But
the year 2000 is sure to come. At that time the names of those who made
great contributions in the enhancement of the quality of life in North
Carolina will be assembled. We can predict that Ida and Bill will be high
on the list. For now, we know that they have earned in full measure the
award each is about to receive.
We now come to the rites of absolution.
We are here tonight not only to honor the Fridays but to forgive
them for an offense over which neither had control. The magnanimity of
a people known as Tar Heels permits the pardon of even such an egregi-
ous error as having been born outside our borders. Our North Carolini-
ana Society Award signifies that Bill and Ida have done their penance and
that the vale of humility now thanks the two mountains of conceit for
sending us this valuable couple.
Several years ago, we wanted to give our award to Archie K. Davis.
He had just received the North Carolina Award, and the National Hu-
manities Center — which owes its location in the Triangle largely to the
work of this man — was about to name its building for him. He told us
that he would be terribly embarrassed by further attention.
Now, we all know that the best time to negotiate a deal is when the
second party is embarrassed. So we quickly struck up a bargain: Archie
would accept the presidency of the Society on condition that he never re-
ceive the North Caroliniana Society Award. He is a firm president, and I
am under instruction not to mention his distinguished career, one that
has brought great honor to our state. I am permitted only to tell you
how he became the University's most unusual student.
A dozen years ago, Mr. Davis — as I deferentially called him at that
time — came to my office in Raleigh, pulled a chair up close, and shared
with me a secret. [I later learned that he shared the same "secret" with
several of you.] When he graduated from UNC in 1932, he wanted to
go on to graduate school in history, but in the depths of the Depression
he was hesitant to turn down a banking job. Maybe next year, he
thought. Forty years later, he wanted to assuage his guilty conscience
and follow his ambition to return to school for advanced study in his-
tory. What did I think of the idea?
I of course encouraged him, having little expectation that this busy
corporate executive would ever be able to carry through his proposal.
Neither of us could have known that just a few years later both he and I
would be at UNC — he as a graduate student, I as his faculty advisor!
Archie received his master's degree in 1976, and two years ago com-
pleted his three-volume, sixteen-pound dissertation titled The Boy Colo-
nel: The Life and Times of Henry King (Harry) Burgwyn,Jr. I have no doubt
that within a year or so a book — somewhat abridged, I hope — will ap-
pear. Meanwhile, he makes only one demand of his Alma Mater: that it
accept each semester his registration fee, for he insists upon being the
University's only permanent student. Ladies and gentlemen, of my thou-
sands of students over the years, my star pupil, Archie Davis.
ARCHIE K. DAVIS:
In one evening, let alone this fleeting moment, how can we possibly
convey to Ida and Bill Friday the depth of our gratitude for their long
and dedicated service to the University of North Carolina, to higher ed-
ucation, to our cultural heritage, and to the people of this great state?
Their record is one that commands both state and national acclaim.
Countless tributes have been given in their honor. And yet, somehow,
mere words seem so inadequate to express not only our pride and grati-
tude but, indeed, our love and affection for these two noble friends who
have so generously given of their talents, who have served so unselfishly
and with such rare distinction, who have walked among us with such
grace and charm, and who, finally, have demanded nothing in return,
leaving only goodwill and abiding respect in their wake.
As I speak, I realize that I may be disqualifying myself for the honor
of presenting to Ida and Bill the North Caroliniana Society Award, for I
am neither poet nor lyricist. Another disqualification could conceivably
be the fact that, as a student at this University, my praise of my presi-
dent might be considered more self-serving than objective. I hasten to
add, however, that I am one student without aspiration or hope of grad-
uation! My only justification for the privilege of presenting the award is,
therefore ; the fact that I am exercising the prerogative of the president of
the Society. This I do with joy, in the full knowledge that I speak for all
of you who have come to pay tribute to our honored guests. May I now
quote from one who has been associated with them for many years as
friend and colleague:
"The University of North Carolina will bear the impress of this
gifted and dedicated man for as long as it endures. He has literally lived
for it, and continues to live for it, and for what it represents in its highest
ideals and aspirations. That he has done so is a tribute to Ida Friday, as
much as to him, for she has unfailingly shared his burdens, his trials, and
his triumphs. Like him, Ida Friday has also dedicated her life to the
University of North Carolina. For those who have worked with Bill Fri-
day, and for all those in North Carolina and beyond, who are the benefi-
ciaries of his work, our debt to both of them is beyond measure."
May I now read the citation:
"The North Caroliniana Society,
in recognition of their public service and
of their contributions to the cultural life
of their fellow North Carolinians,
North Caroliniana Society Award
WILLIAM AND IDA FRIDAY
May 4, 1984."
IDA HOWELL FRIDAY:
Having given up many a Friday night ourselves, Bill and I are most
grateful for your presence this evening. It is always a joy to be in your
I want to say something about Georgia, not about what she said to-
night — grateful as I am for it — but about all those years of help gener-
ously given me that have made such a remarkable difference in my life.
First, we started decorating and furnishing the empty president's
house, and she and Otto Zenke, the wonderful decorator from Greens-
boro, instilled in me a sensitivity to interior design. When Bill didn't
have time to travel, it was Georgia and Kay who invited me to join their
family for my first trip out of the country. After that wonderful visit to
Mexico, I traveled with Georgia and other friends in Europe, Asia, and
Africa, enriching my life.
Whether it was organizing the Chapel Hill Preservation Society or
planning official occasions, Georgia was always willing to advise and as-
sist. Georgia, I thank you.
As I look about me I see many others here tonight who have been
our dear friends with whom we have been involved in some activity, in
some capacity, over the last quarter century. These associations have
made our lives richer and more rewarding.
Back in 1956 neither Bill nor I had any idea of what his appoint-
ment really required nor where it would lead. As it turned out, it has
been a wonderful opportunity for both of us to grow and learn and to be
a part of the ever-changing life of the University and of the state. It has
been exciting and in some ways very demanding; nevertheless, it has
been worth all the time and effort, and we thank you for the opportunity
of serving our state.
Finally, I want to say something rather personal. By having a hus-
band who encouraged me to grow, who assisted along the way, who
opened opportunities for experiences, who gave his wife and his daugh-
ters equal rights, I am able to share tonight's award with him.
We accept this award recognizing how much so many of you have
done to make this evening possible. We thank you and we love you.
WILLIAM C. FRIDAY:
Ida and I thank you for this occasion. Georgia, H. G., Bill, and Ar-
chie have said some nice things and made us recall many memories, and
we thank them for it. The credit for this award belongs to those splendid
men and women with whom we associate day by day. They are the best
colleagues any university president could ever hope to have. It is their
dedication, intelligence, candor, and forthrightness that make the Uni-
versity as successful as it is. The credit goes to them and we accept this
award in their names and on their behalf.
After the glamor of New York and Hollywood, radio networks and
magazine covers, I wondered back there in the late '40s how Georgia
and Kay would find Chapel Hill as a new home. I soon learned all was
well. Kay had already made it clear to me that there were two college
presidents living in Chapel Hill, and he really wasn't too sure of that
new fellow on the block! I wondered what Georgia would think when
she encountered Louis Graves, or Billy Carmichael, or Wallace Caldwell,
or Robert House, or Albert Coates, or Archibald Henderson. But early
on, I found out that Georgia's hometown was Blooming Grove, Texas,
and I knew everything was OK. Her enormous energy, intelligence, and
active involvement in anything she does make it successful. But there is
within her a warm and gentle spirit, sensitive to human suffering and
deprivation, that compels her and she responds. We have seen these
qualities through a privileged friendship she and Kay have shared with
us and for which Ida and I are most grateful.
I first encountered Bill Aycock over forty years ago at North Caro-
lina State and in the NYA work. He came to Raleigh from Lucama and
became student body president, cadet colonel, academic leader, and he
was involved in everything else a student could be. After four years of
World War II, we met again in the UNC Law School. Bill was editor-
in-chief of the Law Review and the first member of our class to be chosen
for the law faculty, but he was teaching us long before we finished
school. He was my first major appointment when he accepted my invita-
tion to serve as chancellor of the University at Chapel Hill. How I wish I
could have been as right about other major decisions as I was about that
one. As is everything he does, his term as chancellor was simply first-
rate; and today every student generation cites him as a truly great teach-
er. His students achieve because he inspires them to do their best by al-
ways doing and being his best. Tonight, he got a little careless with his
judgment and the truth, but I thank him anyway. And especially, Bill, I
thank you and your dear Grace for the abiding friendship you have shared
so abundantly with Ida and me over all these years. You are a blessing in
Archie Davis is North Carolina's Renaissance Man. A profound
success in his chosen professional career by any standard of measurement
and all criteria, he has made the transition from corporate success to
working scholar at Chapel Hill. I have read his manuscripts on Colonel
Burgwyn and they are first rate. Now in his second career as lecturer,
author, and scholar, he is powered by his love for learning and his love
for this place — and that affection runs very deep. Whether his attention
is presently focused on the Research Triangle Foundation, or the Na-
tional Humanities Center, or the University Press or the several founda-
tions, his fundamental motivation is the resulting benefit to Chapel Hill.
He keeps a loving and watchful eye on this place and is ever ready to join
any effort to bring greater glory to the University. For all of us, I thank
this warm and good man and, Arch, I want you to know that all of us
are really very proud of your scholarly achievements, and we deeply ap-
preciate your lifetime of service to this place.
For Ida, our daughter Fran and her husband Jack who are here, and
our daughters Mary and Betsy who could not join us, we thank you for
the privilege that has been ours for nearly forty years of being a part of
the University of North Carolina. And it is a privilege to know and to
work with such wonderful people and together share sorrow and joy,
triumph and defeat, in the common faith that in the end, the effort will
make the world a bit better.
Let me say something about the University that I want to say. Any
place that is doing something creative, that is striving to serve all citizens
effectively and is being truthful and candid in dealing with problems, is
inevitably going to disturb people. Most of us do not like to change too
much. If the University at Chapel Hill ever ceases to be a loving and caring
critic, the state will surely suffer. This history of the University sustains its
commitment to freedom. Now, more than ever before, it is imperative that
we protect, and make even more secure, freedom of inquiry and freedom
of expression, which, when exercised responsibly, make possible the
University's intellectual, moral, and professional leadership in North
Carolina and the nation.
We all are swept up in the emergence of new technology and sci-
ence and the evolving changes in global access, food production, indus-
trial development, the mining of the sea, and the colonization of space.
And whether we want to or not, and because our survival depends upon
it, we must face the many human problems that are out there — and
they are in North Carolina, too: hunger, disease, ignorance, greed, pov-
erty, unemployment. Being a part of this great University has taught me
that you can do something to make these conditions better and we can
improve the lot of those less fortunate, if we work at it. They may be
with us always, but we can reduce the pain and suffering and hunger and
eliminate ignorance. And I believe that first among the means of stabiliz-
ing this world is building better relationships between and among people
the world over. This effort should begin at home — with and among
our own people and with this University.
I believe a distinguishing quality of men and women of Chapel Hill
has been individual performance driven by the personal motivation and
personal commitment to reach out, to extend one's hand to help, and to
exercise the courage and burn the energy to make one's life count for
something. It is the inculcation of that commitment of self-giving, of
sharing of one's energies and resources in the most intelligent way, of
thinking and acting creatively to improve our lot, that is the everlasting
glory of this University. It is what we call the spirit of Chapel Hill.
A different day is upon us now, and my generation must now make
way for new and different leadership. This is our history, but the impor-
tant circumstance is that we remain faithful to this spirit of Chapel Hill;
when we do, there is no reason to fear the future; rather, let us rejoice
that the opportunity of a lifetime is before us to be met with all our
strength and with joyful hearts.
Let me close with a personal note for which I ask your indulgence.
Next Sunday, Ida and I will celebrate 42 wonderful years of marriage.
She and our children are the joy of my life and these years have been a
glorious adventure. And but for her love and constant support and total
giving of her life, I could not have done much. All, save four years spent
in the Navy, have been years of association with the University. Betsy,
Mary, Fran, Ida, and I have known no other family home. For them and
myself, too, I thank each of you — and hundreds of others who are a
part of our lives but who could not join us tonight — for your never-
ending friendship and abiding support. Your gift of love is our most cher-
ished memory. It is a great country when a girl from Back Swamp and a
boy from Dallas, like hundreds of others weary from war, may come
here as total strangers and find in Chapel Hill with others from Lucama,
Blooming Grove, and Snow Hill such a rich and rewarding life. So, next
to our families and our churches, let us guard and protect this place with
all of our strength and might; this is trusteeship you and I hold and must
All the Fridays and Jack thank you for this memorable occasion and
we pray that the Father of us all who has blessed you and each of us by
giving us life in all its meaning will watch over you and bless and keep
each one of you in the years to come.
North Caroliniana (Society. Inc.
North Carolina Collection
UNC Library 024-A
Chapel Hill, North Carolina 27514
Chartered on September 11, 1975, as a private nonprofit corporation under pro-
visions of Chapter 55A of the General Statutes oj North Carolina, the North Caro-
liruana Society has as its main purpose the promotion of increased knowledge and
appreciation of North Carolina heritage through studies, publications, meetings,
seminars, and other programs, especially through assistance to the North Caro-
lina Collection of The University of North Carolina Library in the acquisition,
preservation, care, use, and display of, and the promotion of interest in, histori-
cal and literary materials relating to North Carolina and North Carolinians. The
Society, a tax-exempt organization under provisions of Section 501(c)(3) of the In-
ternal Revenue Code, depends upon the contributions, bequests, and devises of
its members and friends.
Unofficially limited to one hundred North Carolinians who have contributed sig-
nificantly to the state, the Society elects additional individuals meeting its criterion
of "adjudged performance," thus bringing together men and women who have
shown their respect for and commitment to our state's unique historical, literary,
and cultural inheritance.
A highlight of the Society's year is the presentation of the North Carolimana So-
ciety Award to an individual adjudged to have given unusually distinguished ser-
vice over a period of years to the encouragement, promotion, enhancement, pro-
duction, and preservation of North Caroliniana.
The North Carolina Collection, the headquarters for the North Caroliniana So-
ciety, has been called the "Conscience of North Carolina," for it seeks to pre-
serve for present and future generations all that has been or is published about the
state and its localities and people or by North Carolinians, regardless of subject. In
this mission the Collection's clientele is broader than the University community;
indeed, it is the entire citizenry of North Carolina as well as those outside the state
whose research extends to North Carolina or North Carolinians. Its acquisitions
are made possible by gifts and private endowment funds; thus, it also represents
the respect that North Carolinians have for their heritage. Members of the North
Caroliniana Society have a very special relationship to this unique institution which
traces its beginnings back to 1844 and which is unchallenged as the outstanding
collection of printed North Caroliniana in existence. A leaflet, "North Carolina's
Literary Heritage," is available without charge from the Collection.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Archie K. Davis, President
William S. Powell, Vice-President
H. G. Jones, Secretary-Treasurer
Gertrude S. Canaway
Louis M. Connor, Jr.